Heavenly Hosts in Ceaseless Worship

Heavenly hosts in ceaseless worship

Versifier: Timothy Dudley-Smith (1972)
Published in 8 hymnals

Printable scores: MusicXML
Audio files: MIDI

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Source: Lutheran Service Book #949
(This is the only full text available.)^ top

Versifier: Timothy Dudley-Smith

(no biographical information available about Timothy Dudley-Smith.) Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Heavenly hosts in ceaseless worship
Title: Heavenly Hosts in Ceaseless Worship
Versifier: Timothy Dudley-Smith (1972)
Meter: 8.7.8.7 D
Language: English
Copyright: © 1975, Hope Publishing Co. All rights reserved. Used by permission

Notes

Scripture References:
st. 1 = Rev. 4:8-11
st. 2 = Rev. 5:9-13

This versification of Revelation 4:8-11 and 5:9-13 incorporates phrases from the five doxologies recorded in Revelation 4-5: the four living creatures sing, "Holy, holy, holy. . ." (4:8); the twenty four elders sing, "You are worthy. . ." (4: 11; see also 232); the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders together sing a new song: "You are worthy . . ." (5:9-10); a multitude of angels sing, "Worthy is the Lamb. . ." (5:12); and all creatures in heaven and on earth sing, “To him who sits on the throne...” (5:13). This is an awesome vision in which ever-greater numbers of creatures gather to sing praise to God and to the Lamb. Our singing could follow the same plan by gradually adding voices and instruments every two lines, until reaching a glorious conclusion to this powerful doxology. A three-stanza version could begin with a few singers on stanza 2, then more singers on stanza 1, this time in harmony.

Timothy Dudley-Smith (b. Manchester, England, 1926) versified this passage in 1972; it was first published in the British collection Psalm Praise (1973). Educated at Pembroke College and Ridley Hall, Cambridge, Dudley-Smith has served the Church of England since his ordination in 1950. He has occupied a number of church positions, including parish priest in the diocese of Southwark (1953-1962), archdeacon of Norwich (1973-1981), and bishop of Thetford, Norfolk, from 1981 until his retirement in 1992. He also edited a Christian magazine, Crusade, which was founded after Billy Graham's 1955 London crusade. Dudley-Smith began writing comic verse while a student at Cambridge; he did not begin to write hymns until the 1960s. Many of his several hundred hymn texts have been collected in Lift Every Heart: Collected Hymns 1961-1983 (1984), Songs of Deliverance: Thirty-six New Hymns (1988), and A Voice of Singing (1993). The writer of Christian Literature and the Church (1963), Someone Who Beckons (1978), and Praying with the English Hymn Writers (1989), Dudley-Smith has also served on various editorial committees, including the committee that published Psalm Praise (1973).

Liturgical Use:
As a song of praise and worship at the beginning of the service, or (more likely) as a doxology at the end–great for worship services focusing on Christ's second coming.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook, 1988

Tune

HEAVENLY HOSTS


BLAENWERN

Composed by William Penfro Rowlands (b. Maenclochog, Pembrokeshire, Wales, 1860; d. Swansea, Glamorganshire, Wales, 1937) during the Welsh revival of 1904-1905, BLAENWERN was published in Henry H. Jones's Cân a Moliant (1915). The tune's name refers to a farm in Pembroke shire where Rowlands conval…

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BETHANY (Smart)

BETHANY, named after the village near Jerusalem, is a suitably dramatic tune for the song text. It was composed by Henry Smart (b. Marylebone, London, England, 1813; d. Hampstead, London, 1879), a capable composer of church music who wrote some very fine hymn tunes (REGENT SQUARE, 354, is the best-k…

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Timeline

Instances

Instances (1 - 7 of 7)Text InfoTune InfoTextScoreFlexScoreAudioPage Scan
Baptist Hymnal 1991 #40TextAudioPage Scan
Hymns for Today's Church (2nd ed.) #570Text
Lutheran Service Book #949Text
Psalter Hymnal (Gray) #233Text InfoTune InfoTextScoreAudioPage Scan
Sing Glory: Hymns, Psalms and Songs for a New Century #40
Worship (4th ed.) #566
Worship: a hymnal and service book for Roman Catholics (3rd ed.) #522Page Scan
Include 1 pre-1979 instance



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